HIGH LEVEL MUSLIM DELEGATION VISITS RIOT HIT KARAULI

A high-level delegation of leaders of the prominent Muslim organisations, including Jamaat-e-Islami Hind President Mr. Syed Sadatullah Husaini, Markazi Jamiat-e-Ahl-e-Hadis President Maulana Asghar Ali Imam Mehdi Salafi and All India Muslim Majlise Mushawarat President Mr. Navaid Hamid visited the riots hit Karauli in Rajasthan on April 14. The delegation assessed the losses and tried to restore peace and confidence among the residents of Karauli. It also met senior government officials and urged them to take the necessary measures to restore normalcy in the violence hit areas and take action against those who perpetrated the violence. JIH National Affairs Secretary Mr. Mohammad Ahmed and activist Mr. Wasiq Nadeem were also part of the delegation.

YATI NARSINGHANAND DELIVERS HATE SPEECH IN HIMACHAL

Hatemonger Yati Narsinghanand, out on bail in the Haridwar hate speech case, has delivered yet another hate speech at a ‘religious’ conclave in Una, Himachal Pradesh, violating the conditions of his bail, NDTV reported on April 17. At the meet, the organisers gave an open call to Hindus to pick up arms. The speakers called for targeted killings of Muslims. Satyadeva Saraswati, one of the organisers of the meeting, told NDTV that it was a private programme and there is no need to “get permission from the administration here”.  “We don’t believe in the law… We are not afraid of anyone… here we are telling the truth, not giving any hate speech,” he added. Arrested in January for organising an event in Haridwar that featured calls for genocide of Muslims, Yati Narsinghanand was released on bail on February 18. One of his bail conditions is that he cannot “participate in such events”, the report said. Earlier this month, however, Yati Narsinghanand gave a hate speech in Delhi’s Burari, reiterating the call for use of weapons against Muslims.

FILE STATUS REPORT ON HARIDWAR HATE SPEECH: SC TO GOVT

The Supreme Court on April 13 asked the Uttarakhand government to file a status report on the Haridwar anti-Muslim hate speech delivered at the ‘Dharam Sansad’ in December last year. An Interlocutory Application was moved in the court in view of the Dharam Sansad scheduled to take place on April 17. The Supreme Court had issued a notice to the Uttarakhand government in response to the petition, filed by Journalist Qurban Ali and former Patna High Court judge and senior advocate Anjana Prakash, seeking an independent inquiry into the anti-Muslim hate speech at the ‘Dharam Sansad’ in Haridwar. Yati Narsinghanand who organised the event in Haridwar called for a “war against Muslims” and urged “Hindus to take up weapons” is facing several FIRs in UP and Delhi. Haridwar police had filed an FIR against five of the speakers on charges of promoting enmity between groups and outraging religious sentiments, following widespread criticism outrage.

BJP DRAWS BLANK IN 5 BYELECTIONS ACROSS 4 STATES

The BJP on April 16 lost byelections to one Lok Sabha and four Assembly seats. The TMC won both Asansol Lok Sabha and Ballygunge Assembly seats in West Bengal, the Congress bagged two constituencies, one each in Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra, and the RJD won in Bihar. TMC candidate actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha defeated BJP’s Agnimitra Paul in the Asansol Lok Sabha constituency. Singer-turned-politician Babul Supriyo, who quit the BJP to join the TMC, won the Ballygunge Assembly seat. The ruling Congress in Chhattisgarh won Khairagarh in the fourth bypoll victory since 2018 with Yashoda Verma defeating BJP’s Komal Janghel. The opposition RJD in Bihar wrested the Bochahan seat from the ruling NDA, with its candidate defeating the BJP nominee by a big margin. In Maharashtra the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi got a leg-up with the Congress’ Jayashri Jadhav defeating BJP’s Satyajeet Kadam.

36 CHRISTIANS ARRESTED DURING MAUNDY THURSDAY SERVICE

A congregation of 100 Christians celebrating a Maundy Thursday service in Uttar Pradesh’s Fatehpur District were threatened by a radical Hindutva mob who surrounded the church and subsequently locked the doors, a report said on April 16. A First Information Report (FIR Number 0224) was lodged against 36 Christians on alleged forced conversion charges. The police filed the FIR based on Uttar Pradesh’s anti-conversion laws after the mob’s leader, Himanshu Dikshit, complained that the church was working to convert Hindus to the Christian faith. While most of the congregation has been freed from the locked church, 36 remain in jail on forced conversion charges. “Sadly, Uttar Pradesh is one of the harshest states in India regarding religious freedom violations,” said ICC President Jeff King.

RAHUL SAYS GOVT HIDING DATA ON COVID DEATHS

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on April 17 said the Centre was hiding data after reports emerged that India is stalling data on Covid deaths. Rahul Gandhi in a tweet said, “Neither Modiji speak truth nor he allows anyone they have been saying falsely that no one died due to oxygen shortage, I have already said that not five lakhs but 40 lakh Indians have lost their lives.” He said that the Prime Minister should give Rs 4 lakhs to every family who died due to Covid. Meanwhile, India has shared its concerns with the methodology along with other member states through a series of formal communications, including six letters issued to the World Health Organisation, said the Union Health Ministry in response to New York Times article titled “India Is Stalling the WHO’s Efforts to Make Global Covid Death Toll Public” dated April 16, 2022.

THEY WANT CHRISTIAN CHAPLAINS BANNED FROM JAILS

Hindu nationalists in India want Christian chaplains banned from visiting prisons, claiming they are trying to convert the prisoners, Crux Now reported on April 13. The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal groups complained to police in Karnataka about the distribution of Bibles to the prisoners in the Gadag district jail and demanded the immediate suspension of all Christian prison chaplains in the state. The April 6 declaration came after a Hindu chaplain had met a prisoner and seen a Bible in the jail. The Hindu activists alleged Christian chaplains were trying to carry out religious conversions and said they should not have been permitted to distribute religious texts, despite the fact that Hindu religious literature is often distributed in jails. Archbishop Peter Machado of Bangalore said the complaint looks like a double standard.

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